Bhakti Fest, the premier American kirtan festival is celebrating its fourth season September 6 – 9 at the Joshua Tree Desert Retreat Center, in Joshua Tree, CA. Bhakti Fest brings the top kirtan artists to this incredible location for four days of continuous devotional music along with yoga classes by top teachers, wisdom workshops and more.
Some of the music is traditionally performed, yet many of today’s kirtan musicians create contemporary adaptations based in jazz, blues, rock, and rap. This artistic integration of cultures has become extremely successful and draws a following as diverse and unique as the music itself. For a taste of kirtan, please download Jai Uttal’s bluesy “Jai Ma” for free here.
According to Sridhar Silberfein, Founder and Producer of the Bhakti Fests, “Bhakti Fest is proud to highlight devotional music at our festival and bring the top artists together for four amazing days. Bhakti Fest is the original multi-day festival featuring kirtan along with other yogic disciplines. Kirtan permeates every aspect of the festival bringing a joyful heart opening spirit that is truly one of a kind.”
Kirtan artists at Bhakti Fest 2012 will include top American kirtan singer Krishna Das, “the Johnny and June Carter Cash of sacred music” (Yoga International) Deva Premal & Miten, kirtan fusionist Jai Uttal, the high energy chants of WAH!, Madonna collaborator turned kirtan star Donna De Lory, gospel influenced singer Dave Stringer, soul kirtan diva C.C. White, husband and wife team Govindas and Radha, the rhythm driven Mayapuris, Jewish mystical chanter the Kirtan Rabbi, bansuri flutist Manose, hang (pronounced hung) drummer Masood Ali Khan, uplifting jammers the Temple Bhajan Band and over 30 other artists. At least one of the two music stages will have music throughout the entire festival. Bhakti Fest is never chant free! For the full kirtan line up please see http://bhaktifest.com/category/festivals/bhakti-fest-september/bhaktifest-kirtan/.
Commenting from the musician’s perspective, rising kirtan diva Donna De Lory’s first performance at Bhakti Fest was “like finding my home – a great meeting of spirits – with a complete sharing between players and listeners alike.” She has performed at every festival since 2009 and will showcase new music this fall from her summer sessions in the recording studio.
In addition to the endless kirtan, Bhakti Fest holds twelve hours of daily yoga classes in three large studios facilitated by world-renowned yoga teachers such as Shiva Rea, Sara Ivanhoe and Bryan Kest. Each day will also feature extensive wisdom workshops geared to educate and inspire with some of the most formidable guides of our time, covering such topics as Aromatherapy, Nutrition, Pranayama, Mantras and Mudras, Meditation and more. Presenters include Radhanath Swami, Shyamdas, Mirabai Devi, Lorin Roche, David Haberman and others.
Attendees will be invited to leave the busy world behind and immerse themselves in a conscious community for four full days for what the festival producers call “the path of the heart.” They will experience a thriving an eco-friendly vendor village of more than 100 artisan merchants offering, raw, vegan, and vegetarian foods, yoga gear, clothing, musical instruments, crafts and more.
The Joshua Tree Desert Retreat Center is the perfect setting to foster inner reflection and spiritual reconnection because of its peacefulness and natural desert beauty. Thousands have come back since 2009 to experience the Bhakti Fests at this pristine resort. Accommodation options include on-site housing, RV and camping as well as over 10 hotels within a few miles of the retreat center.
For a full list of performers and teachers and to purchase tickets (kids under 12 are FREE) please visit http://bhaktifest.com/